My ego has been holding on to an empty ideal, has interpreted something to suit its need for attachment, and its power has been so strong it has swept me asunder. In finding it so easy to ‘love, respect and admire’ another person, I have allowed my ego’s past dreams of emotional fulfilment to come flooding back and interpret this as being ‘in love’: a state that I know cannot last, and therefore one that is not even real. But I have played along with the ego’s story, being almost crushed in the process, because I want to believe in fairy tales. I have awoken now from a beautiful dream, only to find I was living a nightmare.
Do I love her? Of course I do. As I say, loving her was something I found almost too easy to do. And for that, I doubt my position has changed: I would love to spend more time with her and would be willing to put some effort into a relationship. But what my ego was doing was creating a massive weight of expectation that would have been impossible to fill – it had no choice but to end in disappointment. Rejection would have been instantly disappointing, though far kinder, and a relationship could have been devastating.
But I am awake now. I have seen my ego’s cruel trick and I wish to distance myself from it. Romantic ideals are ideals all the same, and reality – the here and now – can never hope to rest on ideals. What is real exists, it is not a dream.
So next time I readily love, respect and admire another, please God let me recognise it for what it is: an opportunity to grow and a clear message that I’m heading in the right direction. I recognised all this on this occasion, but I painted all that with a thick gloss that would have lost its shine immediately reality came along and poured acid on it.
But I am still in love, of this there is no denying. I am in love with my newly unfolding perspective on the world. I am in love with the possibilities it offers and the love it shares. I am in love with all the things I couldn’t see before the dark cloud of pessimism began to lift. But I needed a trigger to recognise this, and it came in the shape of a woman. For this I will hopefully be forever grateful. And hopefully my misinterpretation of this will be something for which I am ever wary. For there is nothing more destructive than placing yourself at the mercy of another, nothing more damaging than the gales of emotion and self-absorption this breeds unchecked.
I am not ‘deeply in love’ with her, but I love her deeply. Just as I should with every other human being, just as I ought with the rest of the world. And I do thank her for helping me see that. I do.